There’s no clear favorite in the longest race at tomorrow’s European Championships.
Written by: David Monti
(c) 2010 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved. Used with permission.
Tomorrow morning’s women’s marathon at the 20th European Championships in Athletics is a wide open affair, but the Russians look strongest for the European Cup team title.
There are 43 women on the start list, and only two –veterans Irina Timofeyeva of Russia and Lidia Simon of Romania– have career best times under 2:25. A total of 19 women have broken 2:30.
Timofeyeva leads the Russian squad with a 2:24:14 personal best. She is joined by Tatyana Pushkareva (2:26:14), Yevgeniya Danilova (2:31:44), Margarita Plaksina (2:28:44), Nailya Yulamanova (2:26:30), and Sylvia Skvortsova (2:26:24). Nations are permitted to enter six athletes and three score on total time for the European Cup.
While Russia has the strongest time, other individuals have a chance to make the podium. They include Italy’s Rosaria Console (2:26:46) and Anna Incerti (2:27:42), Serbia’s Olivera Jevtic (2:25:23), Ukraine’s Tetyana Filonyuk (2:26:24), Sweden’s Isabellah Andersson (2:26:52), and Portugal’s Marisa Barros (2:25:44).
Athletes will compete on a flat, four-loop course in the heart of Barcelona, with the start and finish on the Paseo Picasso next to the Ciutadella Park. It is the first time in the history of the European Championships that the marathon will not begin or finish in the main stadium. The championship record is 2:26:05 by Italy’s Maria Guida in Munich in 2002. The 2006 champion, Ulrike Maisch of Germany, is not competing (Germany has not entered a single woman in the marathon).
Conditions will be warm, humid and a bit windy. The website Weather.com predicts the temperature will be 76°F (24°C) at the start with 69% humidity. The temperature will rise to 81°F (27°C) with 60% humidity by the finish.